Readers: February 27th: Apologies for the scattered posting that's about to come during the next week or so. University has just started and I have a lot of work to do to get on top of things (and ahead!). Thanks for your patience, as always.

Publishers: I promise I'm not abandoning the lovely review copies you've sent!
I'm getting through them and the reviews will come eventually!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Review: Sweet Venom

Title: Sweet Venom
Author: Tera Lynn Childs
Series: Medusa Girls #1
Publisher: Harper Collins Australia
Published: October 1st 2011
Source: Publishers for review

Grace just moved to San Francisco and is excited to start over at a new school. The change is full of fresh possibilities, but it’s also a tiny bit scary. It gets scarier when a minotaur walks in the door. And even more shocking when a girl who looks just like her shows up to fight the monster. Gretchen is tired of monsters pulling her out into the wee hours, especially on a school night, but what can she do? Sending the minotaur back to his bleak home is just another notch on her combat belt. She never expected to run into this girl who could be her double, though. Greer has her life pretty well put together, thank you very much. But that all tilts sideways when two girls who look eerily like her appear on her doorstep and claim they're triplets, supernatural descendants of some hideous creature from Greek myth, destined to spend their lives hunting monsters. These three teenage descendants of Medusa, the once-beautiful gorgon maligned by myth, must reunite and embrace their fates in this unique paranormal world where monsters lurk in plain sight.

It's not often that you come across a book with three strong and distinct narrators. Sweet Venom draws readers in with its supernatural creatures and teenage heroines, all completely different from one another. Enjoy reading a novel that feels more like three, and fall deeply in love just as I did! Another brilliant book by Tera Lynn Childs you must get your hands on.

What I loved most about Sweet Venom was the characters. The author skilfully introduces the three sisters individually, building up each character and familiarising readers with them before writing in the next. Gretchen and Grace are the main focus of the novel and develop a strong relationship, making their quest to find their other sister even more gripping and suspenseful. Gretchen Sharpe is an excellent hunter, trained by her guardian ever since she was found as an orphan, while Grace Whitfield is an ambitious student who plans to reinvent herself at her new school, kicking her quiet pushover self out the window. Both girls have admirable qualities and are very likeable! As they introduce readers to their third sister, Greer Morgenthal, their relationship becomes particularly important as Greer isn't like them. Rich and stuck-up, she couldn't care less about anything other than herself. Yes, we have a big problem on our hands! As much as this story is about the supernatural, it is as much about the sisters finding each other. Only after many investigations, accidental run-ins and interventions do we end up with the brilliance that is Sweet Venom and its amazing relationships.
I set my phone down, close my eyes again, and remind myself of why I put up with Kyle. In the year we've been going out, I've gotten a lot of practice with that my personal trainer calls aggression-reduction techniques - an elaborate name for counting to ten. Or, in Kyle's case, eleven.
The mythology was fantastic, but no surprise there. Childs always creates stories with great paranormal backdrops. We discover that the girls are descendants of Medusa and it is revealed that they come from an elite lineage of guardians who have an important destiny. After learning about the art of hunting the supernatural, the creatures and even Medusa's life, you'll be enraptured by the wonderful storytelling, which will keep you tethered to this world. You'll never want the book to end! I know I'm itching to continue the series!

Not only is this a paranormal novel, but a romance. While Greer and her oblivious boyfriend Kyle are nothing serious, you'll swoon over Grace and Gretchen's love interests! They're amazing. Gretchen can't seem to shake her admirer, Nick, but Grace and her brother's friend, Milo, are very interested in each other. Milo is a senior football goalie who is charming, sweet and takes the siblings around to see the town. With that smile and kind heart, how can you resist? It's very amusing seeing Grace up her game for Milo. Nice clothes and lip gloss while doing homework at home? Expecting someone, are we? *wink* While Gretchen is too busy for relationships of any sort (including with Grace - oh how fun that hurdle was...), she is undeniably shaken by a boy in her class. Watch as she tries to convince Nick and herself that there's nothing between them and see how sexily persistent he is. Both romances are special, hot and endearing in their own way. Don't fall over yourself!
"What happened?" he asks, his voice almost a whisper, just inches away. "You have a nasty-looking bruise right here."
I jerk back and slap my hand to my forehead, connecting with the bruise and sending a throb of pain through my head. Ouch.
"Oh, that." Like I can explain that my long-lost twin accidentally - or so she said - karate chopped me in the head during a monster-hunting training session.
Watching each girl transform is beautiful. Whether barriers are let down, strength is built or set views are changed, you'll love seeing the developments. They find each other through the strangest circumstances and face scary obstacles head on with the strongest support. A magical tale about three sisters taking on the world you cannot miss!
I read Tera's Fin series on the plane and loved it! I'm ecstatic that there'll be a third book! Can't wait to share my reviews with you ;) Has anyone read her Gods series?

Find Tera on Twitter, Goodreads, Facebook, her website and blog.
Buy Sweet Venom from Amazon, The Book Depository and Barnes & Noble.
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